Well then, as exams are over, I feel no “artistic urge to create blogs” that was only ever a veiled exam procrastination technique anyway. Goodbye WordPress: we’re breaking up. It’s not you, it’s me. Have a good one.
So I thought I wasn’t having much exam stress this time around (ha, I’ve only had two out of ten exams so far: I’ve got time), but I think it’s just manifesting itself as existential dread instead.
This is a screenshot of the pass-papers site mathspapers.co.uk: this is the list of Edexcel Mechanics 3 pass papers they offer. The one at the bottom, in black, is the one I will take this Monday.
This exam, for me, is what all the other pass papers here have been for. This exam is the one that will mainly decide whether I get into Oxford or not. In my head, it is so, so different from all the others. And here it is. The latest on a list for other students.
This is when the existential dread comes in. I realise that every exam holds the enormous worth I arbitrarily attached to my one, and that it’s not even my exam, and that thousands of others attach enormous worth to this exam, and that thousands of others attached worth to all the other exams, and then I have to lie down.
I got a low A* in an M3 pass paper today. It was June 2010. I wonder how many future people will do my exam. Some will do it closed-book, no notes, struggling through it like I’ll have done, some’ll do it question-by-question or just look at the work-energy question or something because they’re struggling with those ones. Some will diligently copy out the mark scheme on the desk alongside them, because they forgot to do a pass paper for homework the night before.
It will be my exam. My personal exam, the one I’ve prepared and worked and revised for all this year. It will also be the exam of every single other person on my side of the hall, and the exam of every single person who ever uses it as a tool to prepare for their own exam. I’m not sure I can deal with something so ubiquitous and at the same time so deeply, intimately personal. Now I’m going to lie down.
(By the way, I’m not trying to belittle mental illnesses like chronic anxiety or depression, from which I am happy not to suffer. This is just my navel-gazing.)
This is a screenshot of a type of folder that I’m sure I’m not alone in possessing: it’s the “Dear Diary” sub-file of a sub-file, where I go to type about things when I’m feeling angry or scared (or worse, philosophical), and I just need to get those harmful feelings out of my system.
In my case, they’re all united on the topic of the fact that I’m gay. This is something that it took some time to realise to myself over the last few years, and then more time to convince myself to tell my friends, and then more time to come out publicly, which I am kind of in the process of doing now. Some files take the form of essays, some of conversations between two people called Colin and George (who, in my head, I think are lovers, but I’m not sure), and some are one-line quotes or moans. Tweets, if you will.
Some of the files are not too bad, and, on rereading them, with a few edits, might be fit for public consumption. Well, I say public. I mean I’ll put them on here so that two men and a dog with Internet access and an interest in WordPress can read them, as well (of course) as my friend who’s called himself Working Progress on this site. Hope you’re doing well, Working.
Names have been altered to protect the guilty. Watch this space, huddled masses.
So I go to boarding school.
I access the internet through a somewhat Draconian firewall which blocks everything from the darkest recesses of Internet Pacman-Abraham Lincoln slash pornography to image hosting on WordPress. The latter I am appealing, so I hope to be able to post (and see) images on this site quite soon. I think they will be annoyed if I tried to get the former unblocked, AGAIN.
Watch this space, huddled masses. Watch this space.
*UPDATE* I am now allowed to view images hosted on WordPress between the hours of nine o’clock and eleven o’clock at night, after the allotted ninety minutes on homework time (or, since this is boarding school and people are a little sensitive about using the word “home”, it’s actually ninety minutes’ “prep time”). Praise be to my school’s IT overlords.